5 Important Factors to Consider When Quoting a New Job
CNC shops know that quoting a new job can be as much an art as a science. However, fewer unknowns and less guesswork are the keys to better profits. Here are 5 questions that should be routinely asked and answered before any quote is finalized.
- Is the job a good fit? Each CNC shop has certain capabilities in terms of available technology, processes performed and the expertise and experiences of the people working there. If any of the operations involved in making the part fall outside of these capabilities, the shop should either (1) determine that it can realistically add the missing capabilities or (2) decline the offer to quote.
- Is everyone on board? As part of answering question # 1, the people responsible for each aspect of the project, from engineering and manufacturing to quality assurance and delivery must agree that they can handle their role successfully. Otherwise the job may fall prey to the notorious weak link syndrome.
- Are outside services required? If a shop routinely outsources one or more processes, the cost and availability of resources must be factored into the quote. It would also be wise to have multiple, trusted suppliers lined up in case the designated supplier has an unexpected issue.
- Are raw materials readily available? This is especially important to ascertain when exotic materials are required. Be sure to check into any potential price increases that could occur prior to placing the order. Again, having more than one supplier lined up is an excellent policy.
- What about delivery? Often overlooked is the necessity for unusual packing and shipping requirements. Special packaging materials or carriers that must be used per the customer’s specifications, or simply to insure safe delivery must be part of any quote.
Other considerations include how the job will fit within the shop’s workflow, if 3D prototypes are available to better determine how to perform various operations, and satisfying inspection documentation.
If a job involves machining bar stock, LNS applications specialists can draw on their experience to advise your shop of best practices before you quote. Contact your local LNS representative, call: 513-528-5674, or email: LNS-northamerica.com,sales.